Astronomy is the oldest of the natural sciences, dating back to antiquity, with its origins in the religious, mythological, cosmological, calendrical, and astrological beliefs and practices of prehistory. We look at some of these ancient texts and the greatest astronomers in history.
Ever since Tycho Brahe died suddenly more than 400 years ago, there has been a mystery about whether the Dane whose observations laid the groundwork for modern astronomy fell victim to natural causes or was murdered.
In a world where each city had its own calendar, the Greeks looked to the stars to ensure they did not miss Apollo's birthday, an important festival.
The Greek astronomer Hipparchus discovered precession, the slow movement of the heavens, by studying Egyptian astronomical records thousands of years ago.
When astronomy was closely linked to astrology, astronomical symbols were used to represent various celestial objects, theoretical constructs and observational events in astronomy.
Every 120 years or so a dark spot glides across the Sun. Small, inky-black, almost perfectly circular, it's no ordinary sunspot. Not everyone can see it, but some who do get the strangest feeling, of standing, toes curled in the damp sand, on the beach of a South Pacific isle....